Mother Mother Ocean...
I have heard your call........
|looking towards St. John, from the shore of Fort Recovery, Tortola
There is something mysterious and captivating about the endless, crashing Ocean.
I could sit and watch the waves for hours as they sweep up and back, stealing a little piece of my place on earth and spiriting it off to lands unknown.
I could look out over the great expanse, imagine what could possibly be at the farthest edge of the gentle curve as the Ocean slips over the edge of the world.
In preparing to write today's installment, I did a little research. I wanted to find some interesting legends about the Ocean.
What I found was simply amazing – the phenomenon known as Fata Morgana.
According to Science, this fancy name for light refraction is the cause of Ocean based mirages and 'ghost ship' sightings. The most famous of which – the Flying Dutchman, captained by Davy Jones– in which an entire ship was lost and is now doomed to sail forever. The crew on board will signal to passing ships, in hope of passing letters from the underworld to the living.
This is not a good thing.
The Fata Morgana, named for Morgan LaFay the evil sorcoress, is caused by changing water and air temperaturs as the sun heats the atmosphere above the Ocean. The air near the surface is cooler, with air above getting warmer. Light doesn't travel through these different temperatures in a straight line, which is called a refraction.
However, your brain thinks all light travels in a straight line, which results in things like floating upside down ships...
I am looking forward to actually seeing this.
One Ocean legend I have experienced is the visit of a Gooney Bird.
Gooneys are a member of the Albatross family. They fly better in windy conditions, due to their rather unwieldy physique, drinking sea water and living on fish. They come on land only to breed. And they are said to be the spirits of sailors lost at sea.
|I believe his name is Herbert. He was short on pleasantries.
We had a Gooney bird visit us nightly when we stayed at Fort Recovery, Tortola.
He would sit on the end of the dock in the evening and watch us as we wandered the beach. Finally, one evening, we wandered out onto his dock. Just to see how close we could get.
He just sat and watched with those soulful eyes, allowed me a couple of photos then gracefully flew away.
I'm pretty sure I heard him whisper, 'Davy Jones sends his regards...'
*The first two sentences are from the Jimmy Buffett song, A Pirate Looks at Forty.
**my info on the Fata Morgana is from wired.com.
This post is part of the A to Z challenge. For more entries click: a-to-zchallenge.
H-Head to Heel